Jiu-jitsu Motivation and Inspiration

Motivation is a significant part of training jiu-jitsu. The road to black belt is long and filled with many obstacles – which are not negatives in that we grow by overcoming challenges in jiu-jitsu and in life.

Watch this short video by Prof. Flavio Almeida on his philosophy on overcoming difficulties.

How to deal with adversity in jiu-jitsu

Where can we derive motivation and inspiration during our ups and downs in jiu-jitsu?

The best and simplest advice I’ve heard is “When you feel like quitting, remember why you started.” Often this is enough to put us back in touch with those important reasons that we started training jiu-jitsu.

In several interviews with Gracie Barra black belts, they have shared pieces of their philosophy that they use to motivate and inspire both themselves and their students.

In an interview with Prof. Lucio “Lagarto” Rodrigues he talked about his attitude
Gracie Barra : Can you give some advice on training for the Gracie Barra students from around the world who are reading this interview?

Prof. Lagarto : My advice is to take your time. It’s priceless to have someone looking after us, like our professors, listen at them and put your energy to execute the right technique not to “win” it’s important to “fail” that shows us that something is not right.

Gracie Barra : A few years ago, you successfully overcame cancer and returned to training and competition.
Can you tell us about that experience and what it taught you about your life?

Prof. Lagarto : That cancer just knocked on the wrong door ;))
I didn’t change anything in the lifestyle Carlos Gracie Jr taught me.
I looked at it as a challenge I had to overcome.
It’s funny to say it, but it was a very good experience, things I learned I would not have learned in any other circumstances.
Appreciate every second as your last in every little detail, life becomes so beautiful.

Gracie Barra : What is the most important life lesson you have learned from Jiu-Jitsu?

Prof. Max Goldberg: Anybody can pick their dream and with hard work make it come true all I need is a gi and a way to get to jiu-jitsu!

Gracie Barra : What is the biggest obstacle that you had to overcome in your training?
How did you overcome it?

Prof. Jessica Oliveira : My biggest obstacle was that I had no confidence in myself. I overcame that by training more and more and never giving up. Every woman is different and has different challenges. Some women do not trust themselves or others. Some women do not feel comfortable training with men.
And there are many different challengers for all types of people. This is what make jiu jitsu so great. It gives people he power to overcome so many different challenges. This will most definitely improve their lives and their lifestyles.

Gracie Barra : What is the  most important life lesson you have learned from Jiu-Jitsu?

Prof. Randall Huot : For me jiu-jitsu is about reconnecting to what is real. We’re constantly bombarded with what seem like critical issues and decisions in our daily lives and for many people it can become overwhelming and lead to anxiety or even depression.
The reality however is that most of the things that cause us anxiety aren’t really all that critical in the grand scheme of things and there is, for me at least, no better way to come to this realization than trying fight off a submission from a skilled opponent. I challenge anyone to worry about whether they remembered to send a work email while trying to escape from a triangle. It can be done.

Gracie Barra : What is the  most important life lesson you have learned from Jiu-Jitsu?
Prof. Cristiano Dantas: If you have a dream, you have to fight for it , because nothing falls from the sky and many adversities will appear along that way.
If you don’t get to reach the sky ( your dream ) will get to reach the stars (close to it ).

I truly believe it is a legitimate vehicle for positive change in our lives.
Jiu-Jitsu taught me the value of hard work, promotes my persistence, gets me to face my fears, builds my mental toughness, taught me to be humble, gave me confidence, helped me to get in shape and become more athletic.
So I am very grateful to jiu jitsu for all you have done and continues to do in my life.

Gracie Barra : What is the biggest obstacle that you had to overcome in your training?
How did you overcome it?

Prof. Fabiana Borges :  I started to train at very young age, so everything was fun
and new for me. I believe it helped me to not have so many fears. When I was in college back in Brazil, I stopped train for a while because of school. I didn’t have the time and the drive to go train, so I had to overcome that. I started to have Jiujitsu in my routine again, making the time to go train and the passion and the reasons that I love Jiujitsu so much helped to get back into.

What helps motivate YOU to overcome obstacles in your training?

See also on Gracie Barra : 5 Risky Techniques in Jiu-jitsu – Protect Your Partners!

Credits: Mark Mullen
Gracie Barra Black belt based in Saigon, Vietnam
Instagram: @bjjmarkmullen